Publication Policy

Journals > Shimla Law Review > Publication Policy


The University publishes three annual law journals, namely, Shimla Law Review, SLR (print); HPNLU Law Journal (online); and HPNLU Student Law Journal (online). The publications of the University are ardently committed to a set of publication ethics. These ethic guidelines are, inter alia, formulated with the aim to nurture due process for paper selection of manuscripts and publication of papers in the journals. The set of norms of the Publication Ethics are also intended to ensure protection of the interest of stakeholders. The institutionalization of academic integrity and fair play forms one of the chief objectives for the University publications. In furtherance of these aims, the journals expect contributors, reviewers, and editors to conscientiously follow their respective ethical responsibilities.


1. Participants Consent: Prior informed consent is sine qau non, from all interested contributors, vis-a-vis to publication of their work.

2. Research Results: Authors, who have submitted any work to any of the journals of the University, are not supposed to falsify or misrepresent any data, idea, proposition or results, used in their work under consideration for publication. Contributors should attempt to ensure compliance to the principle of objectivity, in addition to, an unbiased formulation of all facets of their work.

3. Authors: Authors are required ensure that their submissions must include detail of the existing institutional/organizational affiliations. If an author is not affiliated to an institution or organization, they can list themselves as “independent researcher”. It is also incumbent on authors that they fully disclose all sources of financial support, if any, availed in order to carry out the research. Further, any potential conflict of interest of all the authors and co-authors while submitting the article should be conveyed. In addition, the authors should strictly comply with style and length requirements (contained in the Call for Papers) of the journal to which the manuscript is submitted.

3.1. Ethics of Authorship: Authors must ensure that all those who have made considerable contribution in the manuscript, are named as ‘co-authors of the work’. Other individuals, who contributed to the work, though in a smaller manner, should be duly acknowledged and need not be cited as authors.

3.2. Responsibility of the Corresponding Author: It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to ensure that all named authors have approved the submitted version of the manuscript and are willing to take responsibility for it.

3.3. Ghost, Guest authorship: The journals of the University considers all forms of ghost, guest, and gift authorship to be unethical and takes a firm stance against such practices. Where such practices are identified the authors in question will be removed from an article through a post-publication erratum.

1. Plagiarism: Submitted Manuscripts must be the author’s original work. Plagiarism constitutes the practice of taking someone else’s work or the form of expression of idea and portraying them as one’s own. In addition to the double- blind peer review, the Publications of the University, would also use appropriate software to ensure that all submissions are devoid of any plagiarism. Further all submissions must clearly cite and credit their sources. The University is committed to comply, in letter and spirit, the circulars/guidelines of the University Grants Commission on the subject.

2. Transfer of copyright: All submissions accepted for publication are required to submit the copyright transfer document duly signed by all the authors. The University shall have exclusive copyright over all published work.


1. Confidentiality: Reviewers are expected to maintain strict confidentiality of the work they have reviewed. They should refrain from disclosing the fact of having reviewed a specific manuscript/paper of a particular contributor for all time to come. A reviewer should understand that disclosing identity of himself/herself, and of the author can undermine their solemn duty to maintain confidentiality.

1. Conflict of Interest: After being approached for reviewing a particular paper, a reviewer should disclose the fact whether in any way he/she has any element of predisposition/conflict of interests, in regards to the work under review.  It is expected that in case of existence of such predispositions, he/she shall disclose the fact to the respective Editorial Committee of the Journals. The failure to disclose conflict of interest on part of reviewer is “unethical”, and if discovered later, the Committee reserves the right to take appropriate action in the given situation after establishing the fact through in-house investigation.

1. Early Communication: A reviewer should accept only those articles, the theme of which matches with his/her area of teaching and research. He/she should communicate to the Committee, at the earliest, about his/her inability to review due to the fact that the topic of the paper falls outside his/her domain knowledge. In other terms, a reviewer should only accept work relevant to their own expertise or specialty.

1. Act Responsibly: A reviewer should allocate quality time in reviewing the work, and submit the report within the given time frame. Reviewer should act dutifully; build an honest, impartial review of the work. He/she should examine the work and satisfy himself/herself that the work is of high quality and conforms to the requirements of the journal. He/she should make certain, that the article is devoid of any plagiarized content, while preparing the report of the same. Careful scrutinization of the work should be carried out by the reviewer in order to detect any suspected unethical practice by the author. While writing review report, reviewer should refrain from using offensive or derogatory language against the contributor. Use of temperate language shall be encouraged while communicating the approval or disapproval of the work. Reviewer should report any suspected ethical misconduct on part of contributor.

1. Informed Decision: A reviewer should form a sentient decision about the worth of the work under review, and therefore, be willing to obtain advice from the respective editorial committees, if, at the time of invitation or afterwards, anything remains unclear to him/her.

1. Ethical Process: A reviewer should at all-time satisfy himself/herself that process of review is in accordance with the Ethics Policy, and therefore, ensure that review, in terms of process, quality and outcome, is in line with highest standards of scholarly publication. Anti-plagiarism software may be used by the reviewer to assess the originality of the content and a report may be submitted.


Basic Duty

1. Editors and all the members of the editorial committee, have the solemn duty to uphold the Publication Ethics, and thereby to safeguard the repute of the journal. They should make sure that the content of the work complies with publication and ethical requirements prior to its publication. Thus, the work representing highest quality shall be published. It should be the duty of the editor to ensure well-timed and responsible publication of volume(s) of a Journal.

Editorial Process

1. Editors ought to comply with all the editorial processes in a truthful manner. They should offer sincere guidance to authors, and seek updates from them whenever required. They should keep the author informed of any correction, originality issue, corrigendum, errata etc. If editors deem the work to be unfit for publication on ground of work being unethical, misleading, plagiarized, against the publication policy and ethics, then they should reject such work after due intimation to the author. In such instances, they should provide sound reason for rejection arrived purely on merits. In communication stating rejection, editors should take care to satisfy queries from author before arriving at any decision. Foremost, it should be clearly stated that it is only the work which is rejected not the author’s creative potential.

1. A close connection should be established with the author and reviewer during entire editorial process. Editors should not hesitate from seeking required clarifications from the author and reviewer in an informed manner.

1. If despite taking all editorial care and pre-caution, a published work later tuns out to be plagiarized or unethical, the editorial board should cause an investigation to be made after giving full opportunity to author(s) to defend himself/herself in such instances. It is stated clearly that a published work later turning out to be unethical may invite further necessary action against the author(s) as the editorial committee deems fit.

Conflict of Interest

1. Editor who is assigned the task of editing any work shall make sure that he/she does not have any conflict of interests. The liability to this effect will be entirely of such editor. Therefore, editor must make an early determination as to his/her conflict of interest in respect of any assigned work.


1. Editors should deal with all submission related work in full confidence and ensure strict adherence to the Publication Ethics.